Corporate has set our computers to turn off the screen after 15 minutes, and to hibernate after 24 hours. We are required to leave our computers on and our accounts logged in when we leave for the day because, after hours, Corporate IT will sometimes remote in and do necessary updates, but they don’t always reboot the system when done. (Yea, I’m cringing, too.)
I’ve taken up the habit of rebooting the system first thing on Monday morning regardless if I see signs of a reboot already completed. (I’ll sometimes close out everything but leave an empty Notepad file open. If the file is still open when I come in the next day, the computer had not been rebooted.)
This past Monday, I rebooted and watched as my computer gleefully installed several updates that took twenty minutes to complete. [Local IT] was working on a nearby system and was fussing at it.
“This damn thing won’t work. We need to get it replaced.”
“What’s wrong with it?”
“Word is hanging on a new document, and Explorer isn’t showing me all the files that I know is in that folder and… [more glitches]. It’s old. It needs to be shot. I’m going to put in a request for a new one. Maybe a new monitor, too.”
“Have you rebooted it?”
“I did. This morning.”
“You turned it on this morning.”
“But have you rebooted it?”
“… But it was off. So I booted it this morning.”
“It was in hibernation mode. All our computers were. The only way to make sure it has been rebooted is to manually reboot it. I’ll bet if I check the system uptime, it’s going to be at least three months.”
She looked at the computer. Looked past me to my monitor announcing updates were being installed. Looked back at her own screen. Then made me question the job structure in the company.
“How do I do that?”
What I wanted to say: YOU ARE THE LOCAL IT SUPPORT. YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO KNOW WHICH WAY A USB PLUGS IN AND THAT IT DOESN’T BELONG IN THE ETHERNET PORT. YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO KNOW HOW TO SOLVE BASIC WINDOWS PROBLEMS THAT DON’T REQUIRE ADMIN PRIVILEGES. THIS IS THE FIRST STEP TO SOLVING 99.995% OF WINDOWS ISSUES AND YOU DON’T KNOW HOW TO FUCKING REBOOT A GOD DAMN COMPUTER? WHY THE FUCK ARE YOU HERE AND HOW?
What I did say: “Right-click on the start button. Select restart. Wait.”
Her response upon right-clicking the start button: “WOW! I’ve never seen this menu before!”
The next 35 minutes were spent watching her monitor announce the installation of updates and listening to her run from manager to manager showing off the new thing she just learned and isn’t she just a smart cookie for knowing what those other options are. I remained at my desk, waiting for my system to finish, so I could continue earning a paycheck that insults me every payday.